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Archive for Friday, October 20, 1995

BROTHERS ENTER PLEAS IN SHOOTING

October 20, 1995

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— The juvenile court equivalent of sentencing has been set for two brothers who entered pleas Thursday in connection with a fatal shooting.

Ian I. Mastel, 16, and Benjamin F. Mastel, 15, were among nine teen-agers implicated in the Sept. 24 fatal shooting of Stephanie Perez, 14.

On Thursday in Franklin County District Court, Ian Mastel pleaded no contest to attempted aggravated battery and conspiracy to commit aggravated battery. Benjamin Mastel stipulated -- the juvenile version of entering a guilty plea -- to aiding and abetting aggravated battery, conspiring to commit aggravated battery and criminal possession of a firearm.

Both teen-agers will remain in detention awaiting disposition hearings at 3:30 p.m. Nov. 2.

In a related case, a plea hearing was scheduled for 2:30 p.m. Thursday for Kenneth R. Heth, 16.

Testifying during previous hearings, authorities said Heth and the Mastel brothers were among a group of teen-agers who went to a southwest Ottawa apartment building Sept. 24 to start a fight with Stephanie's brothers. Police said the teen-agers considered the victim's brothers to be rival gang members.

Stephanie, whom police described as an innocent bystander, suffered a fatal gunshot wound to the chest during a confrontation between her brothers and the teen-agers.

Nathan Earwood, a 16-year-old Topeka resident, has been charged with first-degree murder in connection with the shooting and is awaiting a hearing in Franklin County District Court.

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